Hurricane Florence Created Enormous 83-Foot Waves In the Atlantic
Hurricane Florence Created Enormous 83-Foot Waves In the Atlantic
2 p.m. update: Florence within 110 miles of Wilmington
15 September, 2018, 14:03
Forecasters said Florence is expected to continue moving farther inland across the Carolinas through the weekend before turning toward the central Appalachian Mountains early next week.
There are 5.25 million people under hurricane warnings and watches and another 4.89 million under tropical storm watches and warnings.
The storm is tracking to the west at 16 miles per hour.
Forecasters warned that drenching rains of 1 to 3½ feet (30 centimeters to 1 meter) as the hurricane-turned-tropical storm crawls westward across North and SC could trigger epic flooding well inland over the next few days.
"Currently Helene is 2000km southwest of the Azores and remains a category 1 hurricane, with sustained winds of 130kph and gusts in excess of 170 kph".
Hurricane Florence's sustained wind speeds have lessened slightly to 105 miles per hour, but the storm is already bringing surges and tropical storm winds to the North Carolina shore, the National Hurricane Center said in an 11 a.m. briefing. "At present it doesn't look as though Helene will be as powerful as Hurricane Ophelia, however, all precautions will be taken when monitoring this storm".
Although Helene is now a hurricane, it will weaken and be downgraded to a tropical storm by the time it reaches the Azores. That's out in open ocean, where waves are much larger than those reaching the coast as storm surge.
"This storm will bring destruction to North Carolina", Gov. Roy Cooper said Thursday morning.
Residents especially those in flood and landslide prone areas are to be vigilant; and small craft operators and sea bathers are advised to exercise caution due to locally rough seas.
On Sunday alone there will be about two inches of rainfall.
Florence made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane at 7:15 a.m.at Wrightsville Beach, a few miles east of Wilmington and not far from the SC line, coming ashore along a mostly boarded-up, emptied-out stretch of coastline.
Meteorologist at the Met Office Emma Smith said: "Helene is moving up from the Atlantic towards us".
He said the federal government and first responders are ready to assist, but that 'bad things can happen when you're talking about a storm this size'.
Hurricane Florence has weakened somewhat early Thursday as its outer bands approach the North Carolina coast, but weather officials cautioned that the storm will still bring life-threatening conditions.
It's a detail that almost got lost among all the wind, rain and storm surge data sent out by the National Hurricane Center on Wednesday.
The Met Office warned: "Storm Helene is expected to bring a period of very strong winds to western parts of the United Kingdom late Monday and for a time on Tuesday".
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Florence "is expected to remain an extremely unsafe major hurricane through Thursday", the NHC said in a statement. Myrtle Beach hardware stores and supermarkets were busy ringing up sales of bottled water, plywood and generators.
Brock Long, the head of the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), warned that Florence could "kill a lot of people". George Washington University found thousands more people died on the island after Maria than deaths in previous years.
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Hurricane Florence could bring some rain to Richmond
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Beach Town's Main Drag Empty Ahead of Hurricane Florence
Water kills more people in hurricanes than wind, and he said it will still be an extremely unsafe storm for rain and storm surge . Almost 1000 prisoners in SC will not be moved from their cells, despite a mandatory evacuation order in the area.
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